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Having a business partner can be very helpful when starting a business in so many ways. One of the most important qualities to find in a business partner is someone who doesn’t just mirror what you do, they add to what you can do. This kind of relationship can amplify what you are able to offer in terms of strategy and work produced for your clients based off of meeting more than one need.

Before Cullen and I started Matchbox, we were friends who shared talents in web design and development. Cullen being stronger on the development side and me stronger on the design side. When we began our first project together, the flow naturally catered to our abilities and so the process went as we built our client base as well as our base of talent within Matchbox.

Thinking In Different Ways Than Your Business Partner

Having a complementary skill set might come with a different way to approach a problem. Being mired in the solutions that have worked in the past can lead to the same results. However, when you engage the opinions of someone outside of the realm you are working within, unforeseen options can come into view. There are many times when Cullen will contribute to design issues that we have and I will contribute to development problems with ease and clarity because we aren’t looking at the issue with the same frame of reference. This is an absolutely invaluable asset to have.

Sometimes It’s Personal

When it comes to options to approach a situation, these items aren’t relegated to the actual work that gets completed. We have had many experiences in the past 10 years that are more customer or business driven that need to be looked at in many ways. Coming up with various paths can help resolve a solution is usually easier than pressing the course with a singular view.

Complementary Isn’t Always About Complements

Debate and working to understand another person’s viewpoint can be the most important part of decision discovery. During this process, it’s important to see where other people’s view might be different but the argument doesn’t mean that it’s impeding progress. Being able to vehemently defend a strategy sometimes helps to think out the strategy fully and vet it against critique.

Rounding Out Your Offering

I hear people say that they would like to clone themselves in order to get all of their work done. If you believe you are the most effective person to get that done, great. I agree it would be nice to have a few more hours to take care of the things that get missed.

My opinion is that dividing and conquering can help you accomplish more by aligning the work to skill sets. Understanding the way people work is also helpful to not forcing a situation that will results you aren’t expecting.

When you have a (Liam Neeson voice) particular set of skills and match them up with someone who can neatly align theirs with those of your own – many awesome things can happen!